A student gave their instructor a rude awakening with their question, making him realize that the 90s are a thing of the past.
Time is a strange concept for humans. In school, people beg for it to pass as quickly as possible, but the moment adulthood comes around, it seems as if it has turned into quicksand. Days turn into months and years at a lightning-fast speed. Once in a while, a small comment or gesture jerks the human soul into realizing how far they have come without even realizing it. This is what happened to John Penniman (@Historiographos) when a student's innocent inquiry suddenly pushed him to realize his age. He posted about it on X (previously Twitter), inviting more reactions about the cruel impact of time. For people who still think 2020 was last year, this post will make them fall off their chairs.
Penniman captioned the post, "I will never recover from this student email." In the email, the student asked permission from Penniman to use sources they found from the late 1900s in their paper. Since there was no information about any cut-off date regarding the sources, they extended the question to the professor. Though not 'intentionally,' the student's use of terms like 'late 1900s' definitely gave the shock of a lifetime to the instructor. The professor, like many, was in the comfortable bubble that time was going at the pace he wanted, but this letter made him realize that it probably had overtaken him.
At what point did saying "the 90s" turn into "the last 1900s" ..— PAPI (@1MrPapi) November 28, 2023
The nonchalant attitude that humans have for time has become more noticeable after the pandemic. According to the New York Post, Taylor Knight explained how humans have been afflicted by the "pandemic skip" in recent years. This phenomenon makes them think that they are three years younger. The pandemic paused people's lives, but time went on. Even though people failed to realize it then, them being isolated and stuck did not mean that time would be that way. Nova Cobban, a psychologist in the UK, believes that the phenomenon is an outcome of the disappointment humans feel at missing out on growth milestones and opportunities that would have occurred during the pandemic years.
"[People] have lost so many of the experiences that make up our sense of time passing that it feels like life was on hold instead of moving forward," Cobban told the outlet. "Days would often pass without any new stimulus, significant change or progress. It altered our perception of how much time was passing. As a result of this 'missing time, there is a sense of disconnection between the stage of our lives we feel we are at and the reality of the age and stage we are in." Even outside the confines of the pandemic, humans tend to take time for granted and before they know it, it slips out of their hands.
telling everyone i was born in the late 1900s from now on— Lizbeth Eden (@LizbethEden) November 28, 2023
The comment section chimed in and expressed disbelief at how far off the '90s have gone. @alexcolor fondly remembered the '90s in his comment, "Ah yes, the late 1900s when we only had a dial-up internet connection." @WillBarron2 wrote how the email twists the knife: "The innocence of this email as it rips your heart out. You aren't just old, you are from a bygone era worthy of historical podcasts." @HeyArunima refused to accept the reality and wrote, "20 years ago was the 1980s. I said what I said." @MadeleineHubb shared her astonishment and wrote, "1994 still feels like it was less than 20 years ago, not 30."